CERES Between an asteroid and the hard space

Discussion in 'Private Roleplay' started by Lukas Forgrave, Jan 16, 2018.

  1. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    The colors were good. If someone was into pinks and blues and purples, then they were good. And he had to agree with the sentiment. Even empty, the place would have seemed lively. But amidst the ambient tones and belter beat drops, the echoing of ice asteroids crashing into each other and the subtle inclusion of the hollow moans of spin kicking on, it made for a trendy spot by all accounts.

    "It's good to see you as well, Queenie." He still recalled, fondly, the way she helped him that day and introduced him to her various friends. The very nature of her abode, the way she carried herself, seemed to remain fixed in his mind.

    Blue eyes drifted from the bohemian woman to Levi, glancing to the glowing blue bar top as the shot was put down. He had started early and based off everything that was going on, he didn't see any reason to stray from alcohol. But Levi's comment furrowed his brow all the same.

    "Are they here now?" It didn't occur to him that they may have been wrong. Both were experienced with this sort of thing, Queenie herself having a seemingly endless array of eyes for watching. Instead of taking the shot in full, he sipped, eyes fixed on Levi.
     
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  2. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    ["The man on the far end of the bar with the scar on his face,"] Levi replied in French, posture having stilled as she spoke. Queenie idly pawed at her, running the fingers of her free hand over the tattoos on Levi's scalp. It may have been a simple play to make their presence look casual, as if they suspected nothing, but the fondness in her gaze spoke of their history together.

    ["There's another in the front left corner by the entrance, blue mowhawk. I've never seen them before, but they tailed me all the way from the shop."] Levi took up the freshly poured drink set before her with a healthy swig, ["Tulla tipped me off on the railway."]
     
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  3. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    Tulla, one of Queenie's flowers from the White Orchid House, had helped to wine and dine Luka on his way through the establishment - running from his own set of goons. She had seemed nice.

    "Hmm." The furrowing of his brow continued as he turned, pressing his back and elbow against the countertop. As he sipped the remainder of the drink, the flicker of pink and purple flashing through the empty glass, the detective discretely observed the mentioned men.

    He took them for new blood. Knife boys that would put out on an errand, trying to make their mark in the syndicate. He hazard these assumptions because he didn't recognize either of the men. And while a hairstyle was passing, that scar would give away anyone.

    ["Well..."] He spoke in a low volume, simply enough for Queenie and Levi to hear. ["Now I know why Garrot warned me to not start anything..."] The Belter had a reputation for having a sixth sense. Used to tell Luka that his different joints would ache depending on the impending stress of the environment. Like the Earthers used to say about the rain, but for Garrot, it was all about the future. Luka always assumed he was full of shit and he still holds the same sentiment. ["There's only really two ways for this to go..."]

    Dodge them or confront them. ["And one won't make Garrot particularly happy."] Luka was still healing, though things were getting better. But he'd like to avoid the confrontation if they could.
     
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  4. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    "We're not going to make Garrot unhappy."

    Brown eyes leveled a stare on Lukas that perhaps bore a familiar level of loathing to the night he met her, glaring at him through the crack of a slivered door. This time it wasn't directed at him, but merely a side effect of the situation. Levi couldn't attest to his state of health or how much or little he'd healed over the week. She didn't know if he'd kept a low profile or if he'd dove right back into the thick of things. The point was that she wasn't taking any chances of getting him into a fresh brawl.

    No more button holes either.

    ["Queenie, can you run interference?"]

    ["Let me see who is nearby..."]

    Levi searched her pockets for her box of cigarettes and came up empty. That didn't happen very often. With a muted sigh the woman leaned in towards Lukas, brows lofting in ironic amusement, "There's a pattern forming here I think..."
     
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  5. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He breathed out from his nose, scoffing at any sentiment offered towards Garrot's preferences. Though, Luka understood it was only tenuously applied to Garrot and more applied to his own well-being. That gunshot wound was still healing.

    And based on how Levi was glaring, she also understood that the Martian wasn't one for measured steps or walking on eggshells. Otherwise, he might have made for a successful MCRN candidate.

    "Might as well be a scrapbook at this point..." The patterns were abound and it revolved, he assumed, around him causing trouble. Or maybe like trains colliding, their relationship was the cause for all this mayhem. Either way, he wouldn't be dissuaded from her company.

    Sliding out a cigarette from the box held in his pocket, something kept only recently, he offered her one.

    "You know these are bad for you, right?" The defects of gravity would likely cause more damage to them. Planted on top of the gun shots and constant threat of violence, cancer was the least of their worries. But it was still fun to pick at her, even as his gaze lifted over her shoulder. To the man with the scar who had just moved away from the bar, melting into the crowd.

    @Levi Jones
     
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  6. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    She snorted, taking the cigarette and pinching it between her lips to light up, "You're bad for me."

    And yet here she was. Levi flicked a brow at him, gaze briefly running a circuit over his figure before turning back to Queenie.

    ["Tulla and Iris are here,"] Queenie intoned in Italian, sliding from her bar stool and straightening her shawl, ["I need to get back to the Orchid. I have a client on the way. Good night, love. Be safe."] The Companion leaned in to kiss Levi on the cheek before turning her smile to Luka and speaking to him in Belta Lang, ["Be well, Detective."]

    Levi's brown eyes followed the woman into the crowd, noting the arrival of Iris who casually followed the current of people to wend her way over to the man with the bright mowhawk. She didn't see Tulla and she also didn't see - "I lost track of Scarface."
     
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  7. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He couldn't disagree with her on that regard. Since they had met, there had been nothing but misfortune. And joy. On the belt, it seemed you couldn't have one without the other.

    Luka was lost in the language, as beautiful as it was. He was picking up bits and pieces and may have been spending time, here or there, putting effort towards understanding Italian. But when put around people who were fluent in it, knowing a few words wasn't going to do much for him.

    He nodded to Queenie in response, tilting the drink to her as she departed. Hitting the pack against the counter, he slid out a cigarette for himself and gestured towards the crowd. The place seemed to sway and move with the techno sounds and asteroid drops, people gyrating as the beat picked up. It was largely belta crowd, easy to tell with the significant height, with the occasional drop to indicate inner populations.

    "Hmm." He uttered in response, lighting the cigarette. "Well they're in eye shot, otherwise they wouldn't be doing their job." He took a long drag, narrowing his blue ggaze. "Maybe we should try and lose them?" He recalled the way Queenie had helped before or the way he ran through the red light district, avoiding Benton's goons on an entirely separate matter. This didn't seem much different. "That is...if we want to avoid making Garrot unhappy."

    @Levi Jones
     
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  8. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    Levi liked being welcome into the various bars and clubs of Ceres. It made life easier for her in many regards, so keeping Garrot happy was a little higher on her list of priorities than even she cared to admit to herself. One of those back of the mind things that motivates certain decisions made within a night.

    Decisions that created diversions and distractions for a mowhawk'd belta and a scarfaced hitman. Levi managed to turn a large beater onto a nearby group of Martians with a subtle slip of words and the quiet insinuation that they thought him not only ugly but best used for target practice. The fight that broke out was enough to send a ripple of attention through the entire locale and it grew unbidden by resentment and frustrations between cold-warring groups.

    Everything after that turned into a blur.

    ~~~

    Somewhere off in the nether just beyond the subconscious an alarm bleeped.

    It was early, it was the weekend, and she'd worked late.

    Bleep. Bleep. Bleep.

    A body of warmth shifted at her side, an arm around her middle.

    Bleep. Bleep. Bleep.

    Weight shifted over her, Levi blinked her eyes and watched as a tattooed arm reached over to the flashing hand terminal in the dark.

    Bleep. Bleep. Bleep.

    A hand closed around it, lifted, and promptly chucked it at the nearby wall, smashing it to pieces, "I fucking told yeh-"

    She was now wide awake.

    "What the actual fuck, Luka?" but when she looked it wasn't Lukas, it was Benton, breath reeking of booze, eyes bloodshot.

    "...Who the fuck is Luka?"


    ....bleep, bleep, bleep.

    Levi startled awake next to Lukas with a gasp, sitting bolt upright with the shock of cold sweat hitting the air as the bedsheet slithered away.
     
  9. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    The night didn't go as he planned. He was sure there would be some re-enactment of running through the rainbow district, soliciting help from the local prostitutes. Or maybe they'd find their way back to Queenie's place, the way he had before. But Levi had something else up her sleeve.

    Taking advantage of a man's sense of pride, that was something that struck a bit more home than Luka would have expected. In all his concerted efforts, he tried to hide that sense of upbringing away from those around him. But it was hard to kick the habits instilled by the old man. The sort of disgruntled and gravely talk that spoke of martian's discipline, martian's hardwork, martian's foresight. He could hear the man behind his eyes, words and sermons still living and breathing.

    Luka had things to be proud of. And none it revolved around his father.

    ~~~

    He dreamed but it was the sort that he wouldn't remember. The phantom and evaporating images of building blocks, a small child laughing as they fell over, the sound of someone in the kitchen - pouring a glass of wine. He couldn't place it, but a sense of heartache came with the repetitive beeping of an alarm.

    He squinted, moving to rub his eyes before opening his eyelids. His hand was stuck, clasped to Levi as he felt her jolt awake. The action didn't register immediately and he rolled over to get one more hug out of the pillow.

    "Everything okay..." It wasn't a question, it was too early for that sort of thing. His subconscious assured him that if he simply stated it, it would come to fruition. Blinking steadily, he opened his eyes and turned over, finding her sitting up. She was clammy, cool to the touch, and looked to be in a sort that made him wonder if this was another one of those mornings.

    One that they'd get over.

    "Hey."
     
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  10. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    She'd been staying away from the drink since her last episode - at least, she'd been keeping closer tabs on how much she drank in one go. Being off the medication from the incident helped, but while she'd not had another night terror attack, it didn't mean the routine of nightmares stopped. Normally they weren't quite so vivid, but sometimes the strangest things set them off.

    Like the beeping of her alarm.

    Levi sat there for several long moments while Lukas stirred, trying to catch her breath, and suddenly became very self aware as his muttered words hit the air.

    Bleep. Bleep. Bleep.

    Attempting a steadying breath, she turned to take up her hand terminal and kill the alarm.

    "Yeah," the device clattered back to the nightstand, leaving her hands free to wipe at her face and press the hair back from her eyes, "I'm fine."

    She had not gotten enough sleep. These late nights working the bar after a full week of working in the shop were starting to catch up to her. Though work in the shop had slowed - recent events saw several projects pulled from the lineup. Gil was doing a good job of keeping his cool, but she'd overheard him in the office trying to drum up work for the team. The UN was pulling out of Ceres, which meant so was their work. Hard times for a UN funded business.

    Made her worry about the sort of work she'd have to pick up again to make ends meet.

    Her immediate desire to disappear to the bathroom was fairly heavily quashed by the chill of the air and the warmth of the bed. She couldn't, presently, remember why she'd set her alarm this early, all memory gone by the virtue of Benton's face blazing at the forefront of her mind. Levi slowly leaned back into the comfort of the bed, stared up at the ceiling for several long moments and finally pulled the sheet up over her head.

    "Sorry, don't know why I had it set."
     
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  11. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    "You worked late..." That was part of her schedule now, a trade-off for the change in profession. But things were going slow, the dynamic of the belt was changing. It was something that hung in the air, like that quiet anticipation before the next number was called down on the Friday night penny script bingo. She was having to adapt, going back to working at the bar. As long as it wasn't that other place, they would make due.

    "Maybe you forgot to turn off your alarm..." It was a non-issue and his rebuttal came out as she studied the ceiling. Pulling the sheet over her head, he smiled as he reached behind him and adjusted the light. Given the time, the bulbs behind the filter system were giving off the impression of a sunrise against the white wall. He turned it back to midnight and set the remote back down. "Why don't you stay in bed for a bit?" As if she was going somewhere.

    He had things he needed to do. A memo had just been put out by Captain Holloway, detailing new guidance the would result in the event of a shift in culture on the station. Legalese for standards of practice if, and, or when the UN fucks over Star Helix and the OPA decides to fill the vacancy. It discussed matters that were important to them both, the gangs in particular. And as much as he wished it could be so, that document wouldn't read itself.

    But he'd be happy procrastinate for the time being.

    Tracing the etching of ink across the side of her head, a single bed sheet away, he smiled quietly.
     
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  12. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    She could have easily slipped back into sleep given no response from the man laying beside her. Fatigue hung about like the stench of the lower levels where the filter system had long since been compromised but no one could be bothered to spend the money to fix it. Levi was plenty grateful she and her mother hadn't ended up down there. She'd seen those people, befriended some, likely ended the life of several others. It wasn't a life she wished for anyone.

    But a rasp morning murmur and the sensation of fingertips over her scalp wouldn't let lingering sleep settle in. It was strange, this feeling of quietude and calm in the presence of a man she shared a bed with. Almost felt like a dream.

    He'd never been so calm - there had always been anger. Not necessarily towards her ... rarely towards her, for the most part. At least, not until the last few years. But there was always something churning in his mind, some person or situation needing to be rectified. Some target to see to. Some unfortunate soul caught in the middle of his machinations. The calm was so rare.

    Now the calm was her weekend. The little things she'd quietly come to look forward to. Those late friday nights that bled into later saturday mornings. Slow to wake, slower still to leave the confines of the bed. Whether due to comfort or ... pleasure was always a toss up. But they'd had their friday night already. Levi recalled how checking his wound had turned into extracurricular activities. Which meant-

    "Shit."

    Now she remembered why she set the alarm.

    "It's Sunday."

    Which meant it was her day with Mamen.

    Levi groaned her displeasure. She likely could have slept all day. Wouldn't mind feeling those fingertips tracing the lines of her tattoos, either.

    She didn't move. At that particular moment it would have required a feat of strength to do so. Except to lean her head into his touch.

    "What you gonna do to keep me here."
     
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  13. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    Sunday. What was Sunday? He paused in thought, still groggy, as he studied the way the ink spread across the skin of her head. Then it clicked. Mamen, right.

    As much as he would have loved to offer various distractions to curtail the desire to get out of bed, he appreciated the importance of Mamen's day a bit too much to delay it. At least, not to the sort of magnitude his sleepy mind initially took him.

    "I...am..." He leaned forward plant a kiss against her forehead, still clammy from what he assumed were bad dreams. It was a condition he knew well. "Going to make you breakfast...and coffee." That seemed like the right idea. Stick around too long, he might not make it to the kitchen. Or out of the bed at all.

    Planting his feet on the floor, he rolled his shoulders in a light stretch before gathering up his terminal and checking the time on a particular watch.
     
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  14. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    "Mm."

    A tired grunt in response. Much as she might've enjoyed an alternative means, somehow a little more sleep seemed the better route. A meal, of course, was welcome as well. Eyes remaining firmly shut, mind casually slipping back into that dreary state of listlessness between sleep and wake, Levi tried not to pay much attention to how the bedsheet stuck to her skin.

    Clik.

    Knew that sound. It conjured up a lifetime of memories - what few good ones she could think of. It was a strange comfort to know it was in his possession now.

    "...you coming with us?"
     
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  15. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He rubbed is face, unsure of what the right answer was. Tapping the glass face of the watch, catching the shrunken reflection of himself in the scuffed material, he straightened out his back with a sigh.

    He knew days like this were important for Mamen and Levi. And as much as he needed to scope through this guidance, he didn't really wager that it was too terribly time-sensitive. Drawing his hands outward, making the slow-mo version of an air angel, he curled back and slumped onto the bed.

    His head landed somewhere around Levi's shins, his arm moving up above his shoulder to curl around the inside of her thigh and knee. He closed his eyes and for a moment, he could imagine the ink and the way his fingers trailed along it. Like stripes of a tiger, but with more purpose, removed from the ideas of hiding in plain sight.

    "Of course..." He looked over to her, sleepily. "If you want me to."
     
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  16. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    The bedsheet separated fingerpads from the painted canvase of skin on her leg. It was warm all the same.

    A faint smile reached her thoughts but couldn't muddle through the fatigue to reach her face. She breathed deeply, slowly, dragging potential answers across the mental gateway to her process of speech.

    You know how much Mamen likes your company.

    Your favorite show is playing today at the marquee.

    We're getting noodles for lunch.

    Of course I want you to come.


    She instead settled on, "Only if you promise not to spend an hour in the yarn shop."
     
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  17. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    There were many routes she could have taken to tease him over his various proclivities. The yarn and cross-stitching was just as good as any other.

    Letting a smile ghost across his lips, he feign a frown with a furrow of his brow. "15 minutes...tops."

    He paused, raking his nails gingerly across the ink on her inner thigh. "Been eyeing some fine synthetic silk for tatting. Some lace...or maybe quality bed sheets. The stars are the limit, really."

    That may have not been an outright lie.
     
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  18. Levi Jones

    Levi Jones Wikibreaker

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    Maybe she was more tired than she thought but Levi could have sworn he said silk for tatting. She had no idea what that meant and it certainly didn't make any sense.

    "Tatting?" groggily, the bedsheet still covered her face.

    "Whatever..." she shifted, lazily gesturing with a hand, "ten minutes."
     
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  19. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    "Yeah..." He replied as he looked up at her, along the length of her sheet covered leg. "Making lace...its called tatting."

    He assumed everyone knew that. Obviously he wasn't planning on taking up tattooing any time soon. Didn't have the proper empathy for that sort of thing.

    He tugged gingerly on the sheets, trying to reveal her face.

    "That's fine. I can work wonders in ten minutes."

    Like bartering for a really good deal on some synth silk...
     
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